I know I’m guilty of comparing myself to other moms one too many times. Why is it so much easier to overlook another mother’s faults while we examine our own weaknesses with a fine-tooth comb? I loved Laura Kyle’s post on 5 Minutes for Faith this week because I related to her sentiments so closely.
She spends fifteen minutes on her makeup, adding a bit of eyeshadow here, curling those eyelashes one more time. Her hair just isn’t laying right, as she checks the back for the fifth time with her handheld mirror. Maybe a turtleneck would work better with her hair down, or maybe she should just wear it up and out of the way today. She frets. She frowns. She feels paralyzed in this place of not-pretty-enough.
Across town, another woman is cleaning. Baseboards, windowsills, walls, doorknobs. She sees some spots on the window that she must have missed the day before. She sighs and reaches for the Windex and paper towels. Her infant squawks from across the house, signaling that nap time is over. There is still dust. There are still spots. There are crumbs on the floor. She wants to love and be loved, but there is an ache inside, a yearning that she feels will only be satisfied by perfectly clean.
Her kids are tired, hungry, and generally discontented. One yells at the other from across the park, something about “you better stop that or else”. The other yells back, “oh yeah” and the verbal battle is on. She tries to intervene, but all the other park parents get to see her middle schoolers flailing at each other and throwing not-so-nice names back and forth. She wants to crawl into a hole and escape from this embarrassing failure, what she thinks looks to everyone else like worst mom ever.